Removing Age Spots
Laurence T. Gayao, MD Fitness Doc
Few years back I consulted a dermatologist to check on a small growth in my face that a fellow worker saw and told me to have it checked for basal cell cancer of the skin. The dermatologist shaved it off and sent it for biopsy and it, to my relief results showed it to be benign.
She checked the rest of my skin, and I ask what I could do about the brown spots cropping up over may back? Her reply was, “Don’t worry those are just barnacles of aging.” In my mind I said to myself thanks you don’t have to remind that I am getting old.
Age spots as we usually call them and your doctor may refer them as Seborrheic Keratoses or, ‘Barnacles of Aging,’ are harmless spots and skin growths that occur during adulthood. The may vary in degree pigmentation (color). The spots start as a light brown color, becoming darker and more wart-like in appearance as time goes by. Barnacles of aging are not contagious and do not spread, although they might have small white or black circles in the center and the surface of them may appear irregular. The spots can take various shapes like oval and a fraction of an inch across, or might form in long, tree-like patterns usually on the trunk of a person’s body. Barnacles of aging is the most common non-cancerous skin growths in older individuals.
Causes of Barnacles of Aging: The tendency to develop barnacles of aging is inherited. Common causes and risk factors of barnacles of aging include:
- A family history of barnacles of aging which is true in my case.
- Exposure to a lot of ultra violet radiation, too much sun or tanning saloon exposure. In younger years I use to work under the tropical sun without a shirt.
- Barnacles of aging may occur during pregnancy may be due hormonal changes
- Barnacles of aging may occur following estrogen therapy
- Abnormal increase of melanin in the epidermal layers of the person’s skin
Treatment for Barnacles of Aging
Barnacles of aging do not usually require treatment. Why remove age spots? Usually for cosmetic reason especially if it is in the face, also it it is located in area were it is constantly irritated causing it to bleed and/or cause discomfort.
Ketoconazole Cream: This cream can be applied on the person’s skin once or twice per day. It is important to avoid alcohol solutions, hair tonics, greasy ointments, or soap. This was prescribed for me by my dermatologist, along with ketoconazole shampoo for spots in my scalp.
Low-potency Glucocorticoid Creams: The creams can be applied on the person’s skin once or twice each day.
Electrical Current: Another effective means of treating barnacles of aging. I personally have this done twice in my face and neck which was effective. The growth is numbed, then burned off using an electrical current. It is important to have this done by one who is trained and certified in the procedure. With the numbing cream there is only minimal amount of discomfort.
Home Treatment: Dr. Doug Willen, author of Quantum Paleo, has provided natural solution to barnacles of aging. He recommends Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with onion juice. Onions contain several antioxidant compounds that help to neutralize free radicals in the body. The other ingredient is apple cider vinegar which contains alpha hydroxy acids that will remove dead skin and reveal the healthy skin underneath.
- Take one fresh onion and dice it.
- Pulverize it using a mortar and pestle.
- Put the liquefied onion into a blender.
- Add in the apple cider vinegar and blend.
Use a cotton ball to apply the remedy to your age spots, see video for specific instructions.
When to be Concern about Mole Maliganancy (ABCDE Skin Cancer Foundation)
A – Asymmetrical Shape: Melanoma lesions are often irregular, or not symmetrical, in shape. Benign moles are usually symmetrical.
B – Border: Typically, non-cancerous moles have smooth, even borders. Melanoma lesions usually have irregular borders that are difficult to define.
C – Color: The presence of more than one color (blue, black, brown, tan, etc.) or the uneven distribution of color can sometimes be a warning sign of melanoma. Benign moles are usually a single shade of brown or tan.
D – Diameter: Melanoma lesions are often greater than 6 millimeters in diameter (approximately the size of a pencil eraser).
E – Evolution: The evolution of your mole(s) has become the most important factor to consider when it comes to diagnosing a melanoma. Knowing what is normal for YOU could save your life. If a mole has gone through recent changes in color and/or size, bring it to the attention of a dermatologist immediately.
If you notice one or more of these symptoms, contact a dermatologist immediately.
Something just looks a little odd
See your doctor if your mole:
- develops a crust or a scab
• sometimes bleeds
• is itchy
• feels tender
• is getting bigger or swelling
• is strangely shaped (ie. not round)
• has borders that are irregular
• includes lots of different colors or shades
• is bigger than the size of a pencil eraser in diameter
• has appeared recently (ie. when you are an adult)
Barnacles of aging can be treated through the above means. It is important before you embark on any treatment consult first your physician to rule out skin cancer or advice for best form of Removing Age Spots.
Your Fitness Doc